The arrival of a purple griffin, representing Cardinal Franciotti, is greeted in Lucca by virtues, a river god accompanied by naiads, and genii. Etching after P. Testa.
- Testa, Pietro, 1611-1650.
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About this work
An allegory in honour of the arrival of Cardinal Franciotti as Bishop of Lucca in 1637. He is described as "the indigo shepherd" and "the purple griffin": indigo or purple because he is a cardinal, and a griffin because the griffin appears on his shield. He is accompanied by personifications of the three theological virtues: (left to right) charity holding an infant, hope holding an anchor, and faith praying. The river god is presumably the river Serchio which runs through Bagni di Lucca (though interpreted by Bartsch, loc. cit., as the Tiber). In front of the inscription stand personifications of the four cardinal virtues: (left to right) justice, bravery, temperance and wisdom or prudence. In the lower right corner, cupids overpower a leopard: in Bartsch's interpretation of the original etching, they are playing with the Roman she-wolf